Awesome and Beautiful Bikaner !!!
As far as eye can see, rippling sand and scorching sun expose the vision of
appreciation. Bikaner is an influential district nestling in the north west
Rajasthan, bound in the north by Sri Ganganagar and in the west by
Jaisalmer and Pakistan, is lying at a distance of 243 km from Jodhpur.
Rao Bika was the descendant of Rao Jodha, a renowned ruler of Jodhpur (1459
A.D), who asked his son to leave Jodhpur and established his own kingdom.
Rao Bika then chose a barren land in the harsh desert of Rajasthan and named
it as Jungladesh, which was later shaped into an impressive city and earned
the name of Bikaner. This desert city holds a secondary rank amongst the
principalities of Rajputana. It was an offset of Marwar region.
Do you know, before making it to Bikaner, Rao Bika
first gathered a force of young warriors, whose restless energy proved to be
the motivational power in encountering the hazardous desert. Hence in 1465
birth of Bikaner took place.
Like any other city of Royal state
Rajasthan, Bikaner is situated on an elevated ground, surrounded by a seven
kilometer long embattled wall and guarded by five massive gates. In the
heart of the valley, a beautiful Ganga Canal is formed, build between 1925
to 1927. It was constructed to meet the irrigation requirements in and
around Bikaner. This captivating district of Rajasthan will surely brush you
with memories of ancient times, as one behold its architectural wonder,
superb carvings, royal palaces, rich havelis, religious temples and
ornamental gates, which is no doubt, seems like a wizard of great magic on
desert. Bikaner has always remained untouched from the outside influence of
powerful rulers. The town is blessed with the extremely old lofty houses,
that represents skills of excellent carvings in the medieval times. Bikaner
is also famous for its delicacies like Rasgullas, Bhujias and Papads.
The nearest airport to Bikaner is at Jaipur,
lying 320 Km far, from where the tourists can take RSTC buses or even hire
taxis to access Bikaner. It takes an hour to reach Jaipur from Delhi by
flight. Once in Jaipur, it takes 7 hours drive to reach Bikaner. There are
frequent buses that ply to Bikaner.
Bikaner has well connected rail network to the
cities of Rajasthan and India. The Bikaner district is connected with Howrah
by broad gauge and with Delhi, Jodhpur, Jaipur, Sri Ganganagar, Agra and
Bhatinda by metre gauge railway line.
Bikaner is well linked to the National Highway
No.11, connecting Bikaner with Agra also ends in Bikaner itself. The
district is well connected with metallic roads with all nearby district like
Jodhpur, Nagaur, Churu and Sri Ganganagar. Some of the important distances
from Bikaner are Jaipur is 320 km, Delhi is 615 km, Ahmedabad is 945 km and
Mumbai 1496 km.
This large imposing Junagarh fort was constructed by Maharajah Rai Singh, a
sixth ruler of Bikaner dynasty, who ruled between 1571 to 1612 A.D.
The wealth and power of the king was flourishing in all the near by regions
of Marwar, so he used to collect revenues from half Marwar and half Gujrat,
thus made ample use of funds to construct this landmark on the face of
Bikaner. This magnificent fort has a 986 m long wall with 37 bastions, a
moat and two main entrances to the fort. Despite the fact that Junagarh Fort
doesn't command the hilltop position in the desert, like the many other
grand forts of Rajasthan, but it has never been conquered by any enemy. The
Maharajah tenure with the imperial service offered to Mughal Emperor Akbar,
taught him the visions and great ideas about the art and architecture,
according to which these ideas were incorporated in the architectural styles
of his building in Junagarh fort.
Do you know, the Junagarh Fort of Bikaner built by
Maharajah Rai Singh, though not perched on a hilltop, has never been
conquered and the credit goes to its planners and architectures.
Another thrilling architectural masterpiece of red sandstone is Lalgarh
Palace, nestling 3 km in the north of City Center Bikaner. It was originally
built by Maharaja Ganga Singh in the memory of his father Maharaja Lall
Singh, which took 24 years to construct this splendid palace. The mega
structure of this alluring palace is a superb example of original Rajput
architecture. Its outlook was originally designed by Sir Swinton Jacob, with
the advise of whom it was possible this building became a wizard of
artistry. This palace is blessed with several grand halls, lounges, cupolas,
pavilions, magnificent pillars, richly carved fire mantles, Italian
colonnades and motif of lotus in full bloom. Whereas the walls of the palace
are embellished with vintage etchings, hunting trophies and old portraits.
The treasure trove where the guests can spend hours 'walking in the past' of
The palace also houses a museum and a library, which is fourth largest in
the world. The palace has beautiful lattice and filigree work, sprawling
lawns with blooming bougainvillea and the dancing peacocks make it a not to
be missed visual treat. Bikaner royal family still lives in part of the
palace. Whereas little portion of the palace is now converted into a small
Roof of Divine
Do You Know
According to local lore, Maharajah Karan Sing
while travelling to Golconda in Andhra Pradesh met an artist, who showed him
some fine works in gold. Maharajah was so impressed with his proficiency
that he asked him to construct the ravishing Anup Mahal inside Junagarh
Fort. Exquisite artistry of the palace with gold leaf and floral motifs
still testifies the skill of the great artist.
There are two main Jain Temples "Bhandasar" and "Sandeshwar",
located in the south east end of Bikaner. The Bhandasar Jain Temple is
dedicated to the fifth Tirthankar "Sumtinath" and the construction
of the temple was started in1468 A.D by a wealthy Jain merchant, Bhandasa
Oswal. According to myth, it is said, that 40, 000 kg of ghee had been used
in laying the foundation of this temple. It is carved in red sand stone and
white marble, famous for its carvings , paintings, structural beauty and
artistically designed statues.
Whereas, the Sandeshwar Jain Temple is adores with the marble image of
Sandeshwar and other Jain Tirthankars. This attractive Sandeshwar Temple is
far famed for its superb carving around the doors, columns and painted
Another fabulous attraction just behind the Bhandasar Temple is Laxminath
Temple. It was build during the resign of Rao Lunkaran between 1505 to 1526
A.D. This holiest shrine of Hindus is one of the oldest temple in the rich
soil of Bikaner. Laxminath was the deity of Bikaner dynasty and was
worshipped since Bikaner earned its name. During the festivals a royal
procession of devotees converge on this historical temple. Number of
elaborated edifice are build with the help of villagers and more than five
villages contribute their tribute to this religious understanding. This
alluring temples has number of shops, which were once granted to the temple
by Maharajah Ganga Singh between 1887 to 1943.
Bikaner Excursions !!!
Do You Know
It is said that 40,000 kg of ghee (butter) was
used to water the mortar in Bhandasar Jain Temple, which locals insist that
still seeps the walls on hot days.
Bikaner is adored with delightful temptations near to its surroundings.
Number of temples, lakes, towns forms a natural attractions in the minds of
Karni Mata Templ - 30km
One of the most renowned temple near Bikaner is Karni Mata Temple, situated
in a small town named as Deshnok, located 30 km in the south from Bikaner on
Jodhpur road. This beautiful town is known for the shrine of Karni Mata.
According to legends, Karni Mata once blessed Rao Bika (founder of Bikaner)
to establish his kingdom here and will always be safe from enemies. This
temple is unique in its own way, scores of Rats are venerated here and the
shrine is like a home for them. It is believed that these Rats are children
of the goddess, who inhabit the town of Deshnok. Thus , these Rats are
treated sacred and they freely move in the temple grounds. It is considered
highly auspicious to sight a white Rat.
Devi Kund Sagar - 8km
Next, the tourist can visit is the Devi Kund Sagar. Which has a royal
cenotaphs located at a distance of 8 km, lying in the east of Bikaner. This
royal crematorium has several cenotaphs of Bika Dynasty rulers. Which were
built in memory of the deceased members of the ruling family of Bikaner. The
white marble chhatri of Maharaja Surat Singh is of the most impressive.
Kolayat, A Famous Pilgrimage of Hindus - 51 km
However, Kolayat should not be missed, which is a famous pilgrimage spot
for Hindus across the world, nestling 51Km far from Bikaner on the highway
leading towards Jaisalmer. Its a beautiful religious ground blessed with
series of charming marble, sandstone pavilions, temple with its 32 serene
ghats built around a impressive artificial lake, that never dries in any
season. At the time of Kartik Purnima (Full Moon), huge fair takes place,
when hundreds of Sadhus and pilgrims taking a holy dip in its lake, thus
cleanse themselves from the sins they committed in life. Even the cattle
fair takes place at the same time, one can trade for Camels in the